LAURENS, S.C. — A South Carolina speeding ticket against Cincinnati Bengals defensive lineman Sam Montgomery was thrown out after the trooper who wrote the ticket didn’t show up in court.
Defense attorney Jim Todd said he entered a not guilty plea on Montgomery’s behalf Wednesday in traffic court in Laurens. The judge accepted the plea and dismissed the ticket.
Montgomery was arrested and spent a night in jail after Highway Patrol Lance Cpl. R.S. Salter clocked him going 89 mph in a 55-mph zone. But the trooper’s dashboard camera also captured the officer threatening to use a Taser because the 6-foot-3, 262-pound lineman was struggling to understand his commands.
“The next thing you’re going to get is the Taser,” Salter said on the tape.
“Whoa,” Montgomery responded, “I’m not trying to cause problems.”
Salter was suspended by the state Department of Public Safety, and his conduct is being investigated.
The Index-Journal of Greenwood first reported the ticket dismissal and also reported Salter wasn’t allowed to testify in court because he is suspended.
Montgomery was not in court Wednesday. Todd referred all other questions to Montgomery’s management agency, ProSource Sports Management.
“Sam is just glad he can put all this behind him,” ProSource spokesman Rick Roberts said.
On the dashboard camera, Montgomery said he was returning home to Greenwood when pulled over. He played football for Greenwood High, then spent three seasons at LSU, where he had 19 career sacks and helped the Tigers to the 2011 national championship game.
Montgomery was selected by Houston in the third round of the 2013 draft and signed with Cincinnati as a free agent in April.
HARDY FACES UNCERTAIN FUTURE WITH TEAM: In Charlotte, N.C., the Panthers must decide how Pro Bowl defensive end Greg Hardy’s conviction on charges of assault on a female and communicating threats will impact his long-term future in Carolina.
Carolina made Hardy its franchise player in March, signing him to a one-year, $13.1 million deal after a 15-sack season last year. But talks of a long-term deal fizzled after Hardy was first arrested May 13.
The team isn’t commenting on Tuesday night’s guilty verdict until after Hardy’s appeal is heard. But some former Panthers say the news won’t sit well with team owner Jerry Richardson, who has shied away from signing players who could draw negative attention to the organization.
The Panthers could release Hardy for conduct detrimental to the team, but there’s no guarantee they’d recoup his hefty salary.
FIVE PLACED ON PUP LIST: In Buffalo, N.Y., starting cornerback Leodis McKelvin is among five Buffalo Bills players who aren’t expected to be ready for the start of training camp Sunday.
McKelvin and linebacker Randell Johnson were placed on the active/physically unable to perform list Wednesday. McKelvin is coming off hip surgery.
Starting left tackle Cordy Glenn and defensive tackle Alan Branch were placed on the active/non-football illness list. The Bills did not specify Glenn and Branch’s illnesses.
Starting linebacker Kiko Alonso was placed on the active/non-football injury list after he tore a ligament in his left knee while working out two weeks ago.
The Bills also signed free agent linebacker Stevenson Sylvester and released tight end Mike Caussin.
Players report for training camp in suburban Rochester on Friday, with the first practice set for Sunday night.